At Hahamarketing.com we are doing a series of articles about game-changing online tools. In keeping with this theme, our first interview is with web entrepreneur and marketer Andy Barr.
Andy came up with the idea for a tool that would help calculate the amount of physical activity needed to burn off certain foods and drinks.
Not only was this tool a runaway success, with media exposure in nearly 15 countries. WorkOffYourDinner.com was featured in the mainstream media in newspapers in the UK such as Metro, The Sun and on national television shows like The Jeremy Vine Show and This Morning TV Show.
So let’s get on with the interview with Andy and discover a little more about the process of creating the online calculator and the very personal reasons Andy had for coming up with such a tool.
How did you come up with the idea for the tool Andy?
“Well basically, I used to be very overweight myself. For over 7 years I weighed 19 stone. Now I’m down to 13 stone. The tool was an aid to my weight loss journey and was created to help others in my position.”
How long did the tool take to create?
“The tool took around 2 months to create. I came up with the idea and did some data points in an Excel spreadsheet. I used sites like Myfitnesspal and Harvard Uni for the data. “
“Then I handed it over to the developers. Then to the designers. I was the weak link in the process, to be honest. Or else it might have been done sooner.”
How many people were involved in the creation of the tool?
“Overall there were 5 people involved in the process. Myself as the creator and researcher. 2 Developers to work on the code. 1 Designer to do the look and feel of the calculator. And a PR person to get the word out.”
Does the tool require much maintenance?
“Not really no. Calories don’t change. However, we add a few meals as requested from time to time.”
How successful has the tool been?
“Well the tool has achieved news coverage in 15 different countries including Spain, Portugal, UK and US. We earned 130 coveted backlinks to help with our Google Ranking. Many from high Domain Authority sites.”
What was the biggest issue you ran into when developing or rolling out the tool?
“When it came to building the tool. We encountered some time overruns. Especially when trying to hit deadlines. We also had some unrealistic timelines.”
“It proved a controversial tool for the fitness community. But i figured if it worked for me it might work for others.”
What has been your ‘North Star’ metric in creating the tool? ie. which web statistic have you been tracking the most (eg. sales, visitor numbers, time on site etc..)?
“Well, the calculator was created to promote our website Alertr.co.uk. So I’d say customer sign-ups. The tool drove up to 200 sign-ups per day during the peak.”
How did you go about promoting the tool?
“PR outreach primarily. We leveraged social media first. I have a decent following on social media on my Instagram. fitnesswanker tracks my weight loss journey and has somewhere between 12-15,000 followers.”
“Plus the mainstream media are always on the lookout for popular trends online. So soon after we launched – many news organizations picked up the story”.
Finally I’d like to say a big thank you to Andy for taking the time to do this very informative interview. We’d also highly recommend trying the tool for yourselves workoffyourdinner.com.
Have an idea for a game-changing tool for your industry? Then simply contact us for a free consultation.